Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Punishment For Opening Christmas Presents?? - UPDATED!!

What would you do if your 10 year old opened up any and all gifts (hers, yours, brother, errrbody) three days before Christmas?

Thoughts?? Then I'll reveal what we're doing.

This child...**sigh**


Long version:

I came home from Zumba on Tuesday night and was getting Link's gifts for daycare ready for the morning, when I see what looked like a skirt peeking out of my mother's gift bag for Maddy.

My mother is meticulous about everything she does, so I knew she didn't just throw gifts in a bag and that they were individually wrapped in tissue paper.

On closer inspection, it appeared that all of the gift bags had been altered in some fashion, even ones that weren't for her.

I decided not to wake her up out of her sleep because I'm still salty about that damn detention, and woke her behind up nice and early before work on Wednesday. Of course, when I asked the initial question: "Maddy why on God's green earth did you think it was ok to open up gifts 3 days before Christmas?!", all I got was the deer in head lights *blink blink*. No denial, no admittance, just that fricken blank stare.

So here's what we did (I did actually, hubby says he's staying out of this one, but he cosigned)

1. The standard punishment = no TV and no computer time till Christmas

2. Can't open anything until New Year's since she saw most of them anyway

3. Apologize for ruining Christmas (long speech given about taking away a parents joy on Christmas morning - you know, I laid the guilt on thick)

Now that I've had some time to reflect, I really don't want to have a further ruined Christmas and came up with this:

1. I had my mom call Maddy and tell her that "Maybe if you're really good over the next two days, no sulking, no attitude, and write Mom an apology...maybe just maybe mommy'll reconsider letting you open gifts on Christmas".

2. I asked her to come clean and write down on a piece of paper what she opened and what she saw.

Off I went to Zumba tonight and I came home to an apology card and a slip of paper with the answer. Here's the dilemma: She only wrote down that she opened Nana's gift and looked at the dress, and was going to look at the others but the tissue paper was too much - Am I a sucker because I believe her?

Final answer to the punishment problem:

I will let her open what gifts are under the tree, but... our super gift to her that's been hiding in the garage will get wheeled in to the living room still intact in its box. We will show it to her, and then wheel it back into the garage - her TELESCOPE!!

This way if she's telling the truth, she still learns her lesson for touching the gifts, and if there was more, then she still learns a lesson and has to earn back the telescope - praying she'll get her act together by New Years!!!

Lesson for mommy: Wait until Christmas Eve to put kiddie presents under tree!!


Tracita Linda (Tracey) said...

Beating'! lol I just read Makes me WAnna Holler's post and I thought I'd make myself laugh more with your no-more-communal-peeing post!


mrstdj said...

Well, I come from hardcore parents (check out my last blog about what they did to me one Christmas), so I'd likely let her keep one gift and take all the rest away.

Alicia@ Mommy Delicious said...

That child must have been really excited! LOL. I don't have a 10-year-old, but I would ask them to wrap the gifts back that don't belong to them. Then on Christmas, the child won't have any (or not as many?) gifts to open -- that's a natural consequence for opening gifts early. Now you won't get to be excited with everyone else on Christmas morning.

Then I would try to get to the bottom of the behavior and try to figure out the real reason the child opened gifts -- I'm sure they knew that it was for Christmas and not some random occasion.

cuzzo said...

WOW is all I can say....I can honestly say we don't put the Christmas gifts out until Christmas Eve not to prevent anxious kids but for the sheer look of awe on their faces when they see the change from having gone to bed so that Santa can come...mind you Santa brings one gift because he can't get all the glory but they dont'care about really do need to get to the root because she is old enough to know better and if you have a standard punishment then at some point is it really a threat if she knows what she is going to get taken away from her....good luck because 6th and 7th grade is going to be even drama as she comes into her own or tries to...